My Great Grandmother’s UFO Sighting

By John W. Milor

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Me at 5 yrs old - Grandma's House


            My Great Grandmother Thelma was born in Kentucky shortly after the turn of the 19th century. She and my Great Grandfather were godly people. In fact, my Great Grandfather Rant was an evangelist during the great depression. His aunt prophesied over him when he was a newborn baby, saying that he would be a preacher of the Word of God. She was indeed a prophetess, no doubt, because what she said came to pass. He left home with his teenage bride and traveled all over the United States during some tumultuous years in America, spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My Grandmother Ruth said they sometimes lived on potatoes for months at a time, living out of their car, making camp at the side of any given road.


            My Great Grandmother saw and experienced a few “different” things throughout her lifetime, and relayed these stories to various family members, including myself. I’d consider her my most reputable source of all my stories, because she was greatly known by all for having a fervent faith and being a godly woman. She once told me that she had read the Bible twenty six times cover to cover, and was currently working on her twenty seventh reading. My childhood visits to her house were always accompanied with stories about Daniel and the lion’s den, David and Goliath, and other famous Biblical accounts. My earliest memories of her and my Great Grandfather were the times they were busily planting seeds of faith in my heart. It goes without saying that she never missed church, prayed for hours every day, read her Bible every day, and dedicated her life to serving God in any way she could.


            Grandma Thelma’s seeds of faith weren't the only thing she planted in my heart. I also remember her bizarre tales of the paranormal. She once saw a UFO when she was a young teen. Our entire family thought it fascinating to hear such an outlandish story coming from her, of all people. Her story about the angel that saved her life as well as her two visions of Jesus Christ seemed more fitting, but a UFO?!?  Where did that come from?  She told this strange story one night when many members of my family were at her house visiting. She was contently reading a newspaper story about a wild goose chase between several police cars and a UFO sighted in the countryside of Madera, Ca. (where we all lived). She piped up quite suddenly, excited about the article, read it out loud, and then blurted out to everyone’s amazement, “I saw a UFO when I was younger.”  Everyone’s mouths fell open.



            My interest in UFOs was peaked at the ripe age of five years old when my Great Grandmother made her declaration. I didn’t know what UFOs were, but whatever they were certainly seemed interesting, judging from the dumbfounded looks on everyone’s faces. It was clear to me that most people thought they didn’t exist, but if Grandma Thelma said she saw one, THEN THEY EXISTED. Many say that UFOs are only a product of this technological age, but I don’t consider this a valid fact, knowing that my Great Grandmother Thelma lived in backwoods Kentucky and never saw an automobile before, much less a flying contraption. She said she was very impressed by its polished surface; it may have been the first thing she ever saw that had a polished alloy surface.


            She said it happened during broad daylight, one afternoon while she and her sister were walking home in the middle of a deserted prairie. They noticed a strange object shaped like a cigar hovering without sound, about twenty feet above the ground. It was cruising fairly slow, and flew right by them, less than one hundred yards away. It had a shinny metallic surface, like aluminum, and a glass bubble on top. She actually saw a man inside. For those who attribute all UFO activity to Top Secret government projects, I don’t think our military was developing things like this less than twenty years after the Wright Brothers made their debut.




            There were some bluffs near by, and when the object reached the bluffs, it went over the cliffs, then zipped off at an amazing speed. She said in the blink of an eye, it was gone. It made a “Zingggggg” sound when it shot like a bullet over the cliffs and out of sight. My Grandmother even made the sound-effect to illustrate her point. If she were still alive, I’d question her more about the incident, and ask her what her biblical views were. She said she and her sister rushed home to tell their mother, only to be harshly scolded and sworn to secrecy. I suppose she was excited to get it off her chest after some sixty plus years of silence about the strange event. Nobody in our family ever doubted her. A seventeen year old girl could be discredited on multiple accounts, (overactive imagination, lying, wacko, or just plain silliness), but an eighty year old devout Christian woman from Kentucky―what motive could she possibly have had to commit the sin of lying to her family about something as odd as a UFO sighting? “I don’t care what people think,” she said bluntly, “those things are real.”


Perhaps she found a peculiar familiarity while reading Ezekiel 1, 10, or 2 Kings 2:11-12 in her Bible.


            2 Kings 2:11-12

11And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. 12And Elisha saw it, and he cried, My father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof. And he saw him no more: and he took hold of his own clothes, and rent them in two pieces.